Grand Circle Travel Reviews | Glassdoor

Grand Circle Travel Reviews

Updated September 16, 2018
239 reviews

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2.4
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Alan E. Lewis
154 Ratings

239 Employee Reviews

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Pros
  • "Casual dress code, nice are in Boston to work" (in 16 reviews)

  • "The travel benefits are outstanding" (in 30 reviews)

Cons
  • "Company values of Open and Courageous Communication and Risk Taking are lip server" (in 20 reviews)

  • "Roles outside of the Call Center have more freedom/flexibility" (in 25 reviews)

More Pros and Cons

  1. Featured Review

    "Great people, great benefits and grateful for the experience!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    I have had a very positive experience since joining Grand Circle Travel more than a year ago. I have a great manager and enjoy the people that I work with who are extremely nice, hardworking, and passionate about what they do. The company offers generous benefits which include health, dental and vision, transit and parking subsidies, 401K with a match program, tuition reimbursement, casual dress code, travel benefits, and much more. One of the unique benefits here is the Wellness Program, including an onsite gym. Through the Wellness Program employees can participate in onsite Yoga, Reiki, Meditation and have access to a full-time Wellness coach who is amazing and inspirational. We work hard, but we also get to play hard and enjoy fun things like summer BBQ’s, departmental celebrations, and the annual holiday party. The company motto is “We help change people’s lives” which is evident not only by our traveler’s testimonies but also by the Community Service work that is done both locally in and around Boston and globally. Grand Circle employees are able to participate in monthly events that help to give back to the local community and through the Grand Circle Foundation, the company is very generous in giving time and money to the underserved and underprivileged communities around the world. I am very proud to work for a company that does so much good in the world and that truly helps to change people’s lives.

    Cons

    I have no cons to express at this time.


  2. Helpful (2)

    "Grand Circle Corp has changed my life!"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Current Employee - Communications Manager in Boston, MA
    Current Employee - Communications Manager in Boston, MA
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    Approves of CEO

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Back in 2014 i started my journey here with Grand Circle Corp. I'd been referred by a friend that had been working here 15 years at that time (and is still here). I came in with dreams of traveling and truly making a difference in the lives of others.

    My first role was in the call center as a Traveler Support Specialist. I was immediately impressed with the level of support I was given as a new hire. I knew nothing about travel. In fact, I'd never been out of the country. I was set up with a mentor that really helped me learn geography as well as the ins and outs of the industry. Through hard work, dedication, the support of my mentor and management team, I quickly excelled! Before long the guy that knew nothing about geography and had never left the country was leading the pack with his performance.

    After just a few short months of hard work, asking for help, and implementing feedback I was chosen to be a part of a coaching pilot team, and sent to Austria & Germany for FREE on a product training trip.

    I really loved coaching. It was an opportunity to support new hire associates in the way that I was supported when I entered the doors at GCC. As a coach I assessed call trends, created & facilitated training content, and helped drive overall performance. It was then that I was offered my first supervisor role with a team of 15 associates within my first year of employment.

     Again, with the support of my peers, my management team, and my mentors I was able to excel as a supervisor. My heart however remained with the coaching program. So when I was asked to return to develop future coaches, I jumped on the opportunity.

    After one year of developing coaches, I was offered a role as a New Hire Training Specialist where I trained all new hires in Traveler Support. Facilitating in a classroom environment was something I always wanted to do but feared. By the time I became a trainer though, Grand Circle had taught me the importance of taking Risks!!

    Fast forward to my current role. I am currently the Communications Manager for the Lewis Family Foundation (non-profit side of GCC) where our mission is to give back to the community, double the amount of 4 year college grads in the Dorchester, Roxbury, and Mattapan areas.

    I have been with GCC 4 INCREDIBLE years! While I understand that everyone has their own experience, I felt that it was important that I share my journey with you as it has been and continues to be a positive one. The guy who never left Boston has now built a career that he can be proud of, and traveled to 13 countries in just 4 short years!

    If you're looking to make a POSITIVE CHANGE in your life and in the lives of others, then this is the place for you.

    Cons

    well the con is that it's hard work!! NOTHING WORTH HAVING COMES EASY. The industry is ever-changing and ever-evolving. Things change frequently because they need to. We need to keep up with industry standards as well as the expectations of our travelers. You need to be the type of person that is very self aware, open to receiving feedback, and remain positive in times of challenge.

  3. Helpful (1)

    "Lots of opportunity for the right people"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Recommends
    Positive Outlook
    No opinion of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    Great opportunity for growth if you can go with the flow. Wonderful, passionate associates. Great travel products. Excellent location and good benefits.

    Cons

    Constant, shifting change.

    Advice to Management

    Speak up. Be honest.


  4. Helpful (1)

    "Never again"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    Coworkers are nice, and most of the customers are friendly to work with. Decent pay and benefits.

    Cons

    Rude customers who are entitled and higher ups who don’t care. Revolving door of employees because they are either fired or quit. Don’t do it unless you’re fine with getting yelled at over things that are out of your control.


  5. Helpful (8)

    "Corrupt Owners and Questionable Employee Practices"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than a year)

    Pros

    Casual dress code. Fun Holiday party. But two things don't make up for the horror show that is GCT.

    Cons

    Where to begin, let's start with the borderline dilapidated building with old/used/dusty office furniture and light fixtures. If you need to use the elevator make sure you tack on an extra 15 minutes to your commute so you can reach your desk on time. This place looks like a dump/hoarder's paradise. It's pretty embarrassing, especially with all the brand new office buildings going in around the area.
    The owners are cold and calculated individuals who will use all your time/efforts/energy (even on weekends) until they no longer need you anymore and throw you out like garbage. They actually think that there is a large qualified candidate pool willing to put up with their nonsense. Every single employee working for them lives in fear of being fired because they know how they operate. One day you're in, the next day, for no reason, you're out. Everyone is constantly covering their tracks and making sure they don't mess up. On the day I was fired I texted my boss letting her know that I was running late because I had just had a truly scary medical emergency but my fear of them made me suck it up and go to work. Instead of asking me if I was ok or telling me to stay at home (as any normal person would) she was adamant about my whereabouts and was very concerned if I would be in the office that day. She went about the day as normal, having me work a full day knowing full well what had just happened to me, and then at 4:30 had HR fire me for no legitimate reason at all and all my insurance was cut off so I couldn't even go to the ER later that day or follow up with my doctor. In my time there I had only ever called out sick ONCE.
    This is real life. This is how they treat a fellow human being. Truly disgusting and I hope I never work for anyone like them again. I never did anything wrong, worked with a very high level of professionalism yet was let go in the most horrendous way.
    I should have got out sooner instead of subjecting myself to this type of treatment which is so hard to explain on here. You need to have the thickest skin to deal with them, they will cut you down at every opportunity and border on harassment.

    Advice to Management

    There's no advice for management, you aren't dealing with rational people here.
    HR should stop writing fake reviews or at least be a little more creative. They're very obvious. Contrary to what HR wants to make prospective candidates think, Glassdoor isn't "a few disgruntled" employees, it's past, current employees telling the TRUTH.


  6. Helpful (1)

    "It's okay"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Current Employee - Anonymous Employee

    I have been working at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    Travel benefits, vacation time, they'll train you if they like so great place to learn skills.

    Cons

    There is a lot I could say, I think other comments will have this covered, just be wary and have a tough skin.


  7. Helpful (14)

    "Grand Circle is the worst"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than 5 years)

    Pros

    Benefits including commuter and pto are competitive. Compensation is above average in the field. Great location.

    Cons

    The reason Grand Circle is the worst is because the owner is petty and doesn’t follow any legal rules or laws, and creates an absolutely terrifying and toxic work environment.

    Recently the owner has been frustrated at how many people have resigned. As an owner I would see this as a sign that work conditions weren’t good and I would want to know what I could do to improve conditions to encourage associate longevity. Not this owner. This owner, as always, turns a blind eye to his perpetual wrong doings, and instead had his lawyers write to every Boston area competitor threatening them he will sue them for taking any Grand Circle associates. The energy and time and money this witch hunt could take could be spent making Grand Circle less toxic.

    Grand Circle is toxic because you are treated off of opinion not fact. Factually you could beat all your goals and bring great ideas to the table but if the owner doesn’t like you, you could be the highest performing member of your team and be fired.

    Our company does a day in New Hampshire every year called Business works and one of the activities is each team does a skit making fun of ourselves as a company. In my many years at GCC there have been no limits to the skits that happen at this theatre...
    And sometimes they can be downright offensive, but for this event, that has always been tolerated. The purpose is to poke fun at ourselves with the hope that it helps us be better professionals going forward. This year, the owner was so upset that one skit made fun of him choking an associate that he had that entire group write the company an apology note. How humiliating! The irony here is a year ago the owner choked an associate at work and there were many witnesses to it and you can see many other glass door reviews referencing the incident, so while the owner finds it absolutely fine to choke an associate, he draws the line at having a joke be made of that. Fine for him to do it, not fine for someone to make fun of it. Do as I say, not as I do! Then the best part is he fired the twenty plus year associate who leads business work for allowing the skit on stage while he never once apologizes sincerely for having choked an associate at work.

    The people at grand Circle are all trying to leave, and for good reason. Grand Circle is such a toxic and horrible work place that there is a 500 person plus ex grand Circle (alum) page as a group therapy to help get over the verbal and mental abuse we endured being there, and that page is larger than the current Boston work force. Think of the gravity of that, there are more people who are glad to be out of there than currently work there because it is unsustainable and absolutely a heinous place to work. You will see gendrism, racism, injustice and if you are unfortunate enough to deal with the owner, you will be bullied and targeted for your age, your gender, your weight, your orientation, you name it.

    My only regret is not leaving years earlier. Avoid grand Circle. No paycheck and no benefit makes this charade worth it.

    Advice to Management

    Alan Lewis, the owner, to sell grand Circle. This place will continue to run to the ground and people will continue to leave in massive turrets if he continues his leadership of this forsaken and dangerous and miserable place to work.

  8. Helpful (10)

    "This place reminds me of the current White House"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee in Boston, MA
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time (More than 3 years)

    Pros

    Few and far between. Frankly the only pro that I can think of is that I did like most of my co-workers.

    Cons

    Cult-like leader and followers.
    This place reminds me of the current white house not in a political sense, but just the chaos and revolving door. I liked my co-workers but every week seemed to bring a head-spinning new story of turnover. The owner is not a conventional CEO and he makes a dizzying number of changes that make no sense (remind you of someone?). I can't even remember the number of managers I had. When teams have this level of turnover, they don’t work effectively.

    Expect to kiss butt in order to get ahead.

    I don't understand the 4-5 star positive reviews, they seem planted by people in the company calling the low reviews fake news. I didn't believe the poor reviews when I first started, I just assumed it was a few disgruntled employees. I wish I had. Don't make the same mistake! I should've left this place sooner, but I'm glad that I did. It's like getting out of a bad relationship, you don't know how bad it is until you're out of it. You lose skills every day that you remain in this place.
    Don't even get me started on the call center and customer support, I can't even tell you how bad those poor guys had it.

    Advice to Management

    What's the point, the place will not change. You can't teach an old dog new tricks.


  9. Helpful (5)

    "Danger"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Negative Outlook
    Disapproves of CEO

    I worked at Grand Circle Travel full-time

    Pros

    Travel benefits and "combat pay"

    Cons

    Everything about the owner makes this place unimaginably difficult to work at.

    Advice to Management

    Just get out as fast as you can


  10. Helpful (6)

    "Copywriter"

    StarStarStarStarStar
    • Work/Life Balance
    • Culture & Values
    • Career Opportunities
    • Comp & Benefits
    • Senior Management
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Former Employee - Anonymous Employee
    Doesn't Recommend
    Disapproves of CEO

    Pros

    You get to write about some interesting subjects

    Cons

    There is an intense amount of pressure, including weekly personal reviews from day one, in which they always inform you they might fire you. Seriously. From day one, they're like, "if we fire you, you'll know it's coming."

    Advice to Management

    Stop telling people you're going to fire them. Provide a more supportive work environment.


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